Wednesday, June 17, 2009

The Beatles and JFK Assassination Myth

A common myth is the belief that Beatlemania in the United States was a reaction to the trauma of the assassination of John F. Kennedy. One problem with this myth is that news of the frenzy that Beatles were causing in England was already reaching the United States before JFK's assassination. To illustrated why this is a myth, I located an interesting travel column in the Lowell, Massachusetts Sun, dated November 19, 1963, exactly three days before John F. Kennedy died. A travel columnist with the pseudonym "Pertinax" wrote, "Saw the rage of England, a singing group called the Beatles who look as though they could use both baths and haircuts."

Pertinax not only sounds similar to the adult naysayers in 1964 who derided the Beatles for their long hair, but he also publicized them as the latest "rage of England," which would have been enough to attract some fashion-conscious teens, regardless of the circumstances of the JFK assassination.

No comments:

Post a Comment